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Magicians of Xanth

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Magicians of Xanth

The Magicians of Xanth are a subset of fictional characters from the Xanth series of fantasy genre novels by Piers Anthony (b. 1934). The Magicians are usually humans. They possess powerful magical abilities and so, are the only humans who are able to take the role of King of Human Xanth. Magicians who are female may be called Sorceresses. This article describes the Magicians of Xanth, who are listed alphabetically.


  • Aeolus 1
  • Arnolde 2
  • Bink 3
  • Dawn 4
  • Dolph 5
  • Dor 6
  • Ebnez 7
  • Elona 8
  • Eve 9
  • Grey 10
  • Gromden 11
  • Humfrey 12
  • Ida 13
  • Ilene 14
  • Irene 15
  • Iris 16
  • Ivy 17
  • Jonathan 18
  • Kadence 19
  • Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm 20
  • Merlin 21
  • Muerte A. Fid 22
  • Murphy 23
  • Nero 24
  • Neytron 25
  • Patxi 26
  • Quan 27
  • Ragna Roc 28
  • Rana 29
  • Reitas 30
  • Rempel 31
  • Roogna 32
  • Rune 33
  • Sea Hag 34
  • Sherlock 35
  • Surprise 36
  • Tallyho 37
  • Tapis 38
  • Trent 39
  • Vadne 40
  • Vortex 41
  • Warren 42
  • Yin-Yang 43


Aeolus, the eighteenth King of Xanth, is known as the Magician of Storms. His predecessor was Good Magician Humfrey who discovered his abilities when he was six. Aeolus became King of Xanth at twenty-two and ruled until his death at ninety-three in A Spell for Chameleon. Four years into his reign, Aeolus made an edict that anyone born without a magic talent would be exiled from Xanth. In his later years, Aeolus fell into senility, a fact he never acknowledged.

In Question Quest, Good Magician Humphrey has flashbacks that give details as to how Humphrey found Aeolus, how Aeolus became king and how he made his edict.

Later in the series, in Xone of Contention, Magician Grey and Robota, a golem, travel back in time to the events of A Spell for Chameleon. They meet Aeolus and learn he is not the fool he appears: Aeolus keeps his soul in a soular cell that was created centuries before by Magician Yin/Yang. The cell prevents the aging and death of the person whose soul is held within. However, the cell cannot undo ageing that occurred before the person's soul was stored. Aeolus' magic resides with his soul and he only removes his soul from the cell when he needs to use it. Aeolus claims he does not need his soul, day to day, and that he feigns senility in order to avoid mundane tasks but Grey realises that Aeolus' unconscionable behaviour is the result of his lack of soul. Aeolus' efforts to stave off death fail and he succumbs shortly after the departure of Magician Grey and Robota. He was succeeded by Magician Trent.


Arnolde, the first known centaur magician, is introduced in Centaur Aisle. Initially, his talent is described as the ability to generate an aisle of magic around his body when he is in Mundania. When Arnolde is ninety, his magic is discovered and he is banished from Centaur Isle by his fellow centaurs. Arnolde is well regarded by humans, however, because his magical ability enabled the rescue of King Trent and Queen Iris from a Mundanian prison. He is an acting-king during the reign of Trent.

In Night Mare, when Arnolde is ninety-eight, he is for a short time, a centaur king. During his reign, he declares that Sorceresses are merely female Magicians, and therefore eligible to serve as Kings of Xanth. In Golem in the Gears, Arnolde reveals that when he carries reverse wood, he is able to create an aisle of non-magic in Xanth. The true nature of Arnolde's talent is revealed in Currant Events.


First appearance A Spell for Chameleon
Last appearance Zombie Lover
Species Human
Occupation Official researcher of the Magic of Xanth
Spouse(s) Chameleon
Children Dor

Bink is the Magician of Magical Invulnerability and the main character in the first two novels of the Xanth series, A Spell for Chameleon and The Source of Magic. He is the son of Roland of the High Council and Bianca. He serves as king pro-tem during Trent's reign.

Bink is banished for not possessing a magic talent when, in fact, he does possess magical ability. Bink's magic does not want to be known because, if it were, those of non-magical means would injure Bink and his family, with the magic being indirectly responsible. Hence, in order to keep itself hidden, Bink's magic works in quiet ways, by seeming coincidence, and very few people know of it. For example, it causes an invisible giant to walk by just as Bink was to reveal his magic whilst under a truth spell. Furthermore, Bink's magic protects him, making him seem an unusually lucky man.


Dawn's magical ability allows her to know anything about the animate. She is the daughter of Dolph and Electra. She and her twin, Eve, appear in Faun & Games. In Well-Tempered Clavicle, she marries Pick a Bone. Her children with him are a human boy named Piton and a skeleton girl named Data.


Dolph is the Magician of metamorphosis. His parents are Dor and Irene. Dolph was engaged to Nada Naga but chose to marry Electra. His twin sorceress daughters are Dawn and Eve. He is a protagonist in Heaven Cent and Isle of View.


Magician Dor, is the son of Bink and Chameleon. He served as king pro-tem during Trent's reign. Dor is able to make inanimate objects, such as rocks, clouds, water, and bones, speak. He is married to Irene. The stork delivered them two children, Princess Ivy and Prince Dolph and they have a third child with magical ability, Princess Ida. Dor appears in Castle Roogna, Centaur Aisle, Ogre, Ogre, and Night Mare.


Ebnez became the sixteenth King of Xanth in 909. He is able to adapt magical inanimate items. Ebnez married Mnem and their daughters are the Muses. He adapted a stone to make an impenetrable magical field about Xanth, which was removed by order of King Trent.


Elona, the "Magician of Longevity", was the fourteenth and second female King of Xanth from 797.


Through her magic, Eve knows all about the inanimate. She is the daughter of Dolph and Electra. She and her twin sister, Dawn, appear in Faun & Games and in Jumper Cable, where they fight over a boy.


Grey is the "Magician of Null Magic". This means he can nullify magic near him and then restore it stronger than it was before. He is the son of Magician Murphy and Neo-Sorceress Vadne. He married Sorceress Ivy, who rescued him from Mundania in Man from Mundania. He is the father of the triplet Sorceresses, Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm. On Ptero, a moon of Ida, when Grey is older, he is known as the royal consort because his wife, Ivy, is a future King of Xanth.


Gromden, the tenth King of Xanth, is able to divine the history of any object he touches. His reign began in 623. While married to a curse fiend, he had a daughter, Threnody by a Demoness.


Humfrey is the Magician of information, also known as Good Magician Humfrey. He is an elderly, withered gnome-like man with five and a half wives. Humfrey is very curious and has a good memory. He is said to possess all knowledge, but his magical talent is actually the ability to find the answers to all questions. In Heaven Cent it is implied that Humfrey's magical talent may be no more than that of locating other magic that may be of use to him. His story of becoming a master of information is recounted in Question Quest. Humfrey believes his magical abilities are not those of a Magician, and so he studies for a degree in magic at Demon University in order to validate his title of Magician.

Humfrey was the seventeenth King of Xanth and a king pro-tem during the reign of Trent. He lives in the Good Magician's Castle which was the former Castle zombie. It is an enchanted place that provides easy access for Humfrey and three challenge questions posed by Humfrey for visitors. Visitors must prove their worthiness to approach Humphrey with their queries.

Humfrey is the protagonist in Question Quest and is instrumental in every book of the series. He acknowledges characters in other books such as On a Pale Horse.


Ida is the Sorceress of the idea: within limits, any idea presented to her may come to be. Ida must first believe that the idea will eventuate and the idea must come to her from someone who is unaware of her magical ability. Ida is the twin sister of Princess Ivy. Although this may have been the result of her own talent. In Knot Gneiss, Ida weds Prince Hilarion.

A small moon called Ptero orbits over her, holding every person in Xanth there ever was or might be. The Ida on Ptero has another moon (Pyramid) where the inhabitants use a barter system that results in givers gaining size and receivers losing size. This Ida has Torus, who has Cone, who has Dumbbell and so on. This continues into infinity, with each moon having different shapes, inhabitants, and rules. Thus, Ida is the caretaker of every conceivable and inconceivable idea. The chain of moons extends to Mundania and cycles back to Ida, herself. In the later books of the Xanth series, a visit to Ida is highly desired.


Ilene is the Sorceress of making illusions real. For instance, she is able to make an illusion of maturity an actuality. Ilene is the daughter of Iris and Trent (after their rejuvenation).


The beautiful, green haired Irene is the Sorceress of Plants. She was able to create a massive arboreal defence about Castle Roogna. When he was King of Xanth, Arnold Centaur decreed her magical ability 'Magician level'. Irene is the daughter of Trent and Iris. Her husband is Dor and her children, raised under her stern eye, are Ivy, Ida, and Dolph. Irene succeeded her mother, Iris, as a female King of Xanth. Irene was a protagonist in Centaur Aisle and Dragon on a Pedestal. She served as king pro-tem during the reign of Trent.


First appearance A Spell for Chameleon
Last appearance Roc and a Hard Place
Species Human
Occupation Emeritus Queen of Xanth
Spouse(s) Trent
Children Irene

Iris is the Sorceress of illusion. She can create illusions in all of the five senses, including illusions of silence and invisibility, and hold them in place with minimal effort. Her illusion can exist a short way into the non-magical realm. Iris possesses a devious and keen intellect. She is a Queen of Xanth by her marriage to Trent. She is also the first contemporary female King of Xanth. Iris is the mother of Irene. She is a protagonist in A Spell for Chameleon and Night Mare. Later in the series, she makes a rejuvenated appearance in Geis of the Gargoyle.


First appearance Dragon on a Pedestal
Species Human
Occupation Princess
Spouse(s) Grey
Children Melody, Harmony, Rhythm

Ivy is the Sorceress of enhancement. She can enhance people and objects; for example, by improving their endurance and aim. Ivy is the daughter of Dor and Irene. She has blonde hair with a tinge of green (from her mother). Ivy is married to Magician Grey. Their children are the triplets, Sorceresses Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm. Ivy is a protagonist in Dragon on a Pedestal, Crewel Lye: A Caustic Yarn, and Man from Mundania.


Jonathan, the sixth King of Xanth, the Magician of zombies or Zombie master reigned from 378 to 478. He is able to re-animate the dead of Xanth. He himself was once a zombie. Jonathan is the son of King Merlin and Sorceress Tapis. He is married to Millie the Ghost and has twin children named Hiatus and Lacuna. He appears in Castle Roogna and Night Mare, Centaur Aisle and Night Mare. He was twice king pro-tem for Trent.


Kadence is the Sorceress of alignment who can make anything move in step, to a common beat. Her mother is Princess Rhythm and her father is Cyrus, the first cyborg in Xanth.

Melody, Harmony, and Rhythm

The Triplet Sorceresses are the children of Ivy and Grey. Melody has blonde hair with a tinge of green and blue eyes like her mother, Harmony has brown eyes and hair like her father, and Rhythm has red hair and green eyes like her cousin, Dawn. Their magical ability allows them to create or enable anything they envision while playing music. If two of the three play together, the power is squared and if all three play, it is cubed. Melody hums, Harmony plays the harmonica and Rhythm beats her drum.


See also Family of Merlin of Xanth. Merlin, the first King of Xanth and Magician of knowledge, reigned from 204. He married Tapis and their children are Jonathan and Taplin.

Muerte A. Fid

Fid, whose talent was alchemy, was the twelfth King of Xanth. According to Question Quest, he is, at most, only half human.


Murphy is the Magician who makes things go wrong. He unsuccessfully challenged for the monarchy and was exiled for a time. He returned to Xanth with a promise of allegiance. Murphy has a son, Grey, with Sorceress Vadne. Murphy first appeared in Castle Roogna. He has served as king pro tem during Dor's reign.


Nero, the Magician who brings golems to life, was the ninth King of Xanth.


Neytron, the Magician who brings paintings to life was the eighth King of Xanth.


Paxti is a magician who creates enchanted paths that can prevent the passage of any creature. He appears in Cube Route.


Quan, the Magician of herbalism was the thirteenth King of Xanth. His uncle was Muerte A. Fid.

Ragna Roc

Ragna Roc is a powerful magician bird. He is able to make an illusion real or make reality an illusion. For each instance, he can do this only once.


Rana, the Magician of Creation was the third king and the first female King of Xanth. She ruled from 286 to 325. She is the mother of Rune.


Reitas, the Magician of problem solving, was the fourth King of Xanth whose reign was from 325 to 350. Despite his title, he created problems.


Rempel is a centaur magician whose talent is to know the talents of others. He is introduced in Xone of Contention.


Roogna was the second King of Xanth who reigned from 228 until 286. Roogna is able to "adapt" the magic of living things, changing it into a similar but distinct form of magic. He built the castle which was named for him and that became the home of the monarchy of Xanth in A Spell for Chameleon. Roogna is married to Taplin, Merlin's daughter.


Rune, the Magician of evocation, was the fifth King of Xanth . He ruled from 350 to 378. Rune's mother was Rana.

Sea Hag

Sea Hag is the Sorceress of immortality and a member of the first human colony of Xanth. On her death, Sea Hag inhabits and possesses another male or female body. The character is introduced in Golem in the Gears and given further explanation in Question Quest and The Dastard.


Sherlock is the Magician of Reversal who can reverse the nature or characteristics of any person or object. His wife is Clio and his adopted child is Ciriana. Sherlock is introduced in Demons Don't Dream, in the company of his friend, Dug Mundane and returns in Currant Events, where he discovers his magical ability.


Surprise was the Sorceress of talents who can use any magical ability, but only once. However, by using her imagination, she is able to endlessly reproduce any effect. Her parents were Grundy Golem and Rapunzel. Surprise was just that to her parents as the stork delivered her when she was five. She was a central figure in Geis of the Gargoyle, and Stork Naked. She has a daughter by Umlaut. In The Dastard, it is discovered that she can reuse talents she's used before, after a long time has passed. However, this discovery was unhappened by the Dastard.


Tallyho is the Magician of talents, who creates and assigns magical abilities to newly conceived babies. He lives in the Gourd. His predecessor was the magician of talents who assigned the talent of cursing to all the descendants of the original Curse Fiends. The character is introduced in Up In A Heaval.


Tapis was the Sorceress of tapestry. She created enchanted tapestries including one decorating Castle Roogna. Tapis was the wife of Merlin and the mother of Jonathan and Taplin and took in Electra.


First appearance A Spell for Chameleon
Last appearance Luck of the Draw
Species Human
Occupation Emeritus King of Xanth
Spouse(s) Iris
Children Irene

Trent, a powerful Magician and an honourable and intelligent man is a protagonist throughout the Xanth series and particularly in A Spell for Chameleon and Centaur Aisle. Trent was a respected king from Aeolus' death until his abdication in Night Mare. He lives in quiet existence in North Village and later in the series, makes a rejuvenated appearance in Harpy Thyme. Trent's magical ability enables him to transform one being into another. Any offspring of the transformed creature will take the new form.


Vadne is the Sorceress of topology: she can change the shape of an object without altering its size, mass, or intrinsic properties. She married Murphy and they had a son is Grey. Dor decreed her ability Magician level.


Vortex, the Magician of demon summoning became the seventh King of Xanth in 478.


Warren was a ghost and could create ghosts and he was the fifteenth King of Xanth. He was exorcised by the people of Xanth after forty-three years in power.


Yin-Yang, eleventh King of Xanth, is able to create invokable spells. Yin is his good self who creates spells of good alignment and Yang his evil self who creates spells of evil. His first wife was Threnody. After her death, Yin-Yang remarried and had a son, Lord Bliss.

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